This is a guest post from John Shaw, Community Outreach/Advocacy at the Wisconsin Board for People with Developmental Disabilities.
This year, the Direct Care Alliance’s Voices Institute, the Wisconsin Board for People with Disabilities (BPDD), and the Wisconsin Direct Caregiver Alliance launched an exciting new initiative called Advocacy Voices Together – a unique training program for people who want to improve the lives of direct care workers and the people they support.
An inspiration for this project, the Voices Institute gathers direct care workers from across the country to learn leadership and advocacy skills. BPDD and WIDCA recognized a need in the community to develop these skills in direct care allies, uniting stakeholders to call for change. With this in mind, the three organizations launched Advocacy Voices Together to do just that.
During the training event, direct care workers and people who receive long-term care services worked together in teams to learn advocacy and leadership skills. The group learned how to build support for better wages, benefits and working conditions for workers, and how to advocate for family members and self advocates with disabilities. The training incorporated the core curriculum of DCA’s Voices Institute, along with key principles from disability community self advocacy.
“This is another huge milestone for the Voices Institute,” said Tracy Dudzinksi, Vice Chair of the DCA Board of Directors, Chair of the Board for the Wisconsin Direct Caregiver Alliance, and President of the Board for Cooperative Care in Wisconsin. Continue reading »